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Techy Tuesday: Find My iPhone

Loosing an item is annoying.  In a house with toddlers, loosing an item is inevitable {and still annoying}.   We loose things around here all the time, but eventually {sometimes months later} what's lost is typically found.  Finding an item is often a testament to your organizational skills, other times it's luck.  When it comes to toys and socks, playing the lost and found game is not a matter of life and death; however, when it comes to our cell phones {especially our smart phones}, it is a matter of some urgency.  We keep a lot of information on our smart phones, so when they are lost, it stirs up panic and increases our blood pressure.  Read on to see how I use technology to bring our blood pressure back to normal with a very useful app.
Find My iPhone

One evening, my hubby and son were playing.  All is well and good.  Our son loves to jump on the couch that my hubby rests on when he gets home from work, even if he's is still resting on it.  Later that evening, Grandma and Grandpa stop by for a visit and before you know it, it's bedtime.  After putting the boy down, hubs and I like to catch up on our shows or watch a movie together and just relax.  This night was no different.  After a couple of hours in front of the television, we head to bed ourselves.  What happens next is where the excitement begins.

I usually take my phone and iPad with me and hubster does the same.  Only tonight was different.  The dreaded question...
Him: Where's my phone?
Me: I don't know, where did you put it?
Him:  I thought I put it right here.
What happens next?  Frantic searching through the house, retracing steps, wondering if our visitors took the phone by mistake, and suspecting the phone may have be left in the car.  It's late and we're tired.  We did not have time to go on a rescue mission for the phone, but it was necessary.  We decide to call the phone so it can reveal its hiding spot, and as the hubby goes back downstairs to listen for it, I remember {as I tend to do} that we have an app for that!  I call the phone twice in a row and hubby is not hearing it.  It must be on silent.  Why are phones always on silent when you're trying to look for them?  Lucky for my hubs, he is married to a techy freak who previously set up all our phones to be found in the event that it one day is lost {organizational skills...yup}.  I use my techy skills to quickly download the app {not sure why it wasn't there before} and within a matter of minutes what's lost is found!

The whole episode lasted a good 20 minutes, but it could have gone on much longer if we didn't have the foresight to set up our devices on iCloud.  Can you imagine?  We could have called Grandma and Grandpa to see if they may have taken the phone.  Then they start searching and backtracking through the night.  Hubby could have gone out to check every crevice of his car.  It goes on and on.  But thanks to this techy fab app, all it took was twenty minutes.  It would have been even faster if we had remembered to look there first, and if I had already had the app on my phone.  Lesson learned and app downloaded and ready to go.

Find my iPhone is an app that works with iCloud.  If you have been following the blog for a while you know that I heart iCloud for all the wonderful things it can do.  Finding your iPhone is just one of those amazing things.

First thing to do is to set up your iCloud with each of your devices.
Multiple devices supported under iCloud service
Second, make sure each device has the Find feature enabled {found in Settings}.
Find My iPhone enabled in device settings
When your phone is lost, simply open the app and tap the device you want to find.  Once there you have several options: play a sound {will sound even if the phone is on silent}, remote lock and remote wipe.
Options when using Find My iPhone
Finally, go find your phone.  In our case, I chose to play a sound and display a message "Here I am!".  Then hubby went downstairs to go look for the phone while I checked the map.  The map below is in hybrid from, so that I could see if it was actually in the house or out in the parking lot.  As you can see, it was in the house.
Hybrid map view for Find My iPhone
Fun Fact:  If you go back and look at the time stamp on each of the images all {except for the iCloud settings image} were taken as our lost and found episode was taking place.  I hope that shows you how much I think of you readers {wink, wink}!  Even in all the chaos, I knew this would be a great Techy Tuesday post!  Thus is the life of a blogger!
Loosing things happens and is usually unavoidable.  Finding things, as in this case, takes foresight and preparation.  If I didn't have the foresight to set up all our devices when I first set up iCloud months ago, misplacing the phone would have been much more serious.  Our lost and found episode took about 20 minutes because I still had to go back and download the Find My iPhone app on my phone.  In this episode, I wasn't as prepared as I could have been, but if this ever happens again, know that this app is on all our devices now!  

Have you ever felt the panic of loosing a phone?  Did you have an app like this to save the day?  Share your episode with me!  Don't have an app to help find your phone?  What are you waiting for!?!  Go get one and tell your friends to get one too {I did}!

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